Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Indian Festival - Teej

When is it celebrated?
July/August, depending on the cycle of the moon.(third day of 'Shukla Paksha' or bright fortnight of the moon in the Hindu month of Shravana or Sawan, which falls during the Indian monsoon season, i.e., July - August).
The Teej festival is widely celebrated in the desert state of Rajasthan. The best place to experience it is in Jaipur, where the festivities are the grandest and most renowned. However off late, it is being celebrated in other parts of India (For e.g.: Delhi, Haryana) and it other parts of the world like Nepal
[Src: http://goindia.about.com/od/festivalinformation/p/teej-festival.htm ]

Why is it celebrated?
* Dedicated to the Goddess Parvati, commemorating her union with Lord Shiva, the festival is celebrated for marital bliss, well-being of spouse and children and purification of own body and soul. The festival is a three-day-long celebration that combines sumptuous feasts as well as rigid fasting. Teej celebrates the victory of a wife's love and devotion towards her husband - an important factor in Hinduism - symbolized by the union of Shiva and Parvati.
* Falling on the Hindu month of Bhadrapada or Bhado (August/September), it also celebrates the arrival of monsoon after a season of oppressive heat. "Teej" is a small red insect that comes out of the soil during rains.
[Src: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teej , http://hinduism.about.com/b/2012/07/16/teej-fast-for-hindu-women.htm  ]

How is it celebrated?
Women dress up in their finest clothes (by the donning of green clothing which symbolises the verdure of rain-fed fields) and jewelry to worship the Goddess Parvati. They also get their hands decorated with henna, accompanied by the singing of special Teej festival songs. Swings are fixed to branches of large trees, and the women take turns to joyfully swing on them.

In Jaipur, a spectacular royal procession featuring an idol of the Goddess Parvati (Teej Mata), winds its way through the lanes of the Old City. It comprises antique palanquins, bullock carts pulling cannons, chariots, decorated elephants, horses, camels, brass bands, and dancers. A bit of everything really!

Girls engaged to be married receive a gift from their future in-laws on the day before the festival. The gift consists of henna, bangles, a special dress, and sweets. Married daughters are given a number of gifts, clothes and sweets by their mother. After the worship has been completed, they're passed on to the mother-in-law.

The Teej festival is a very uplifting occasion, filled with singing, swinging, and dancing. There's plenty of feasting too.
[Src: http://goindia.about.com/od/festivalinformation/p/teej-festival.htm  , http://www.journeymart.com/holidays-ideas/festivals/teej-festival.aspx ]

Recommended Readings

No comments:

Post a Comment